Bill Would Designate Chimney Rock as a National Monument
Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet today released the following statement on the passage of the Chimney Rock National Monument Establishment Act in the House of Representatives. The bill, introduced by Rep. Scott Tipton, passed with broad bipartisan support. Bennet has introduced a similar version in the Senate that is cosponsored by Senator Mark Udall.
“Today’s bipartisan House vote is an important step toward designating Chimney Rock as a national monument, and I applaud Congressman Tipton for his leadership,” Bennet stated. “Chimney Rock has incredible historical and cultural significance, and it has come to mean a great deal to Coloradans. National Monument status will help preserve, protect, and restore the significance of this archaeological treasure. At the Forest Service’s public meeting last week I heard overwhelmingly that the local community supports a legislative or administrative path for national monument designation. I will continue to work with my colleagues in the Senate, and with the Obama Administration, to pursue both paths.”
Last Congress, Bennet’s Chimney Rock bill was passed out of committee in a bipartisan voice vote. It’s passage was subsequently blocked on the Senate floor by a minority of senators.
Chimney Rock is located West of Pagosa Springs in Colorado’s Archuleta County. The bill will designate 4,726 acres surrounding Chimney Rock Archeological Area as a National Monument. Chimney Rock will remain a unit of the San Juan National Forest, and Native American tribes will retain access to the sites for traditional and cultural uses.